(makes about 80 cookies)
1lb. (4sticks) unsalted butter (room temp.)
7 – 7 1/4 cups all purpose flour
4 large eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1 Tbsp. of baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
zest of three oranges
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp. of ground Mastiha resin (place the mastiha in the freezer for a couple of hours, then remove and place between 2 sheets of cling wrap, crush to a powder with your rolling pin and add to your recipe)
sesame seeds for topping
2 egg yolks + 2 Tbsp. milk for eggwash
Pre-heated 350F oven
- Place your soft butter and sugar in a bowl and mix with your hand mixer until creamed. Now add the orange zest, eggs (one at a time), the salt, baking soda, ground mastic and the orange juice.
- To a bowl, measure out your flour and add your baking powder and mix with a fork.
- Add your dry to wet using your hands. As the amounts of flour needed in a recipe may vary slightly, add the flour gradually and knead with your hands until the dough is soft but not sticky or tacky. Form into a ball, cover with saran wrap and allow to rest for 30 minutes. During this period, clean up your work area and gather your baking sheets and line them with parchment paper.
- Using a teaspoon, scoop some dough on your work surface and roll it out with your hand. Now you can form the dough into any shape you wish (I’ve given you a few ideas in the photos). Continue scooping dough and forming Koulourakia and place on your baking trays.
- Whisk your egg yolk and milk and brush the tops of all your Koulourakia (cookies). Sprinkle the tops of the cookies with sesame seeds.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until just golden. Allow to cool, remove from the trays and store in airtight containers for up to 6 weeks.